SOLOMONS DECLINE INVITE TO WHALING MEETING

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Sikua says the commission meeting in London too expensive

HONIARA, Solomon Islands (SIBC, March 9, 2008) – Solomon Islands is not attending this year's International Whaling Commission in London.

Prime Minister Dr Derek Sikua confirmed this during a meeting he held with Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd yesterday in Honiara.

He said the government had enlisted its support for the opposition of scientific whaling.

Dr Sikua says Solomon Islands declined an offer by the Japanese government to meet the country's delegation to the Commission.

He said that for the past years Japan has been funding Solomon Islands' attendance to the International Whaling Commission's meetings.

Dr Sikua said, this year the government declined the offer, indicating that Solomon islands had opposed Scientific Whaling.

He said Solomon Islands cannot afford the expenses to attend therefore decided to absent itself from the meeting.

Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd thanked Solomon Islands for its indication of working with countries opposed to Scientific Whaling.

He hopes Solomon Islands and Australia will work together with other countries opposed to Scientific whaling to build a robust coalition against whaling around the world.

Solomon Islands Broadcasting Corp.: www.sibconline.com.sb

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